MBA Intern Series: Winter Barley Trials 2016
By Ben Harms / July 26, 2016
Ben Harms is an MBA intern based in our Global Barley Research office in Fort Collins, CO this summer. So far, he’s traveled to Champaign, Illinois, Southern Idaho, and East Africa to support SmartBarley and our farmers. Ben is currently a student at Wharton.
The SmartBarley team recently took a field trip with AB InBev’s Barley Research team to review a few of our many U.S. field trials. Our global research team, based in Fort Collins, Colorado, works year-round to ensure that we continually produce the world’s top barley varieties for our growers.
Running any breeding program is a challenge, but when that program must serve growers all across the world as AB InBev’s program does, achieving results becomes even more complex. Over a several year span, our team tests hundreds of thousands of plant variety options. Our goal is to produce seed that will fit grower needs, accounting for various climates and soil types, while also achieving our strict quality standards for brewing. Additionally, our growers produce barley in two different seasons (winter and spring) depending on geography, which requires further focus and research.
Below is one of our field trials in Idaho, where we work with dedicated growers to test our latest potential varieties under a number of different climatic and crop treatment conditions. It takes at a minimum several years to go from an initial seed crossing to a released variety - and we’re proud of the rigorous research and breeding process that leads to the best outputs for our growers!